Saskatoon had its largest ever church service on Jan. 2 as thousands of Christians of all denominations filled Saskatchewan Place during the course of the day in an event called SONday.
SONday is a combination of Sunday and Son’s day, in reference to Jesus Christ.
Rev. Michael Stonhouse of St. James Church in Saskatoon was on the planning committee for the event. He said he was there with 12,000 other Christians for the morning service and at the evening service attended by 3,000.
“Just to stand there with 12,000 other people and all worshipping God together, you really had a rush,” he said. “It was very inspiring to be there, all praising Christ.”
Another moving aspect of the service mentioned by a lay person was the passing of the peace, often among complete strangers, he said. “It was a bridging of barriers or gaps between Christians.”
Mr. Stonhouse also found the evening’s end moving as he watched from the platform as candles were lit from the bottom of SaskPlace to the top.
“In the midst of the darkness, the light was spreading. You could see the light advancing and flare up in little pockets. The good news is going out, even if it is isolated.”
A lunchtime service drew 3,000 and the afternoon service held 3,500 people.
Thousands of dollars were raised for the poor and homeless but a final figure was unavailable at press time.